Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Movie Review: Jack Reacher

When a mysterious man (Jai Courtney) brutally shoots five people in broad daylight outside PNC Park, the accused man Barr (Joseph Sikora) request that detective Emerson (David Oyelowo) contact Jack Reacher (Tom Cruise). Reacher shows up to investigate the murders and find out if Barr is guilty as he once helped him escape justice for a similar murder spree when he served in the military. Jack was a respected military cop who dropped off the grid only to resurface for this investigation. The movie is based on the novel "One Shot" by Lee Child. 

Sadly, the gruesome murder feels all too familiar in the troubled times we live in and adds impact to  the nature of the investigation. Barr's lawyer Helen Rodin (Rosamund Pike) employs Reacher to help her discover the truth behind the victims and the killer. Pike and Cruise work well together as Cruise embodies the cavalier charm of Reacher and Pike plays the incredulous and standoffish lawyer who needs Reacher's expertise. The conspiracy grows deeper as the plot thickens and viewers witness both the mystery solving and the villain's plot.

Reacher beats up thugs all across Pittsburgh as he follows a thread he picked up from a bar fight. Fortunately, plenty of the thugs are morons and Reacher's ruthless fighting methods help him take out the would-be assassins. It's hard not to have fun watching Cruise punch his way through bad guys. The villains take any measure to stop Reacher from finding the truth even framing him for murder. There is a cool car chase where Reacher chases the bad guys and eludes the cops.

The supporting cast was decent and helped the movie along. Courtney is better as a villain than a hero and should find more roles like the one he plays here. Oyelowo is underutilized but serves as a great counterpunch as the officer that is skeptical of Reacher's tactics and hidden motivations of his own. Pike is always enjoyable to watch as her career grows. Other veteran actors elevate the film like Richard Jenkins, Werner Herzog and Robert Duvall.

Jack Reacher fits in with other PG-13 action thrillers that are decent to watch but nothing that one would remember a week or so later. I'm surprised that is spawned a sequel but guess it is because of the sheer number novels Child put out around his cocky and crafty lead character. The culmination of this movie wraps up with some cool action shootouts, rain-drenched fistfights, and a twisty resolution that concludes this mystery as each story stands alone connected only by drifting Reacher. I'm looking forward to checking out the sequel tomorrow night.

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